Liberty News

Senior class hears from alumnus and former NFL player Samkon Gado

April 17, 2015 : By Sara Warrender/Liberty University News Service

Liberty University seniors gather in Williams Stadium for a special Convocation.

Liberty University alumnus Samkon Gado (’05) addressed Liberty University’s 2015 graduating class during the Alumni Relations annual Senior Convocation Friday, April 17, on the Club Level of Williams Stadium. Gado shared his testimony and prompted students to pursue godly success in their lives.

“It’s amazing to (be able to) say that you come from Liberty,” Gado said. “To be a part of something that is more than just dissemination of education or knowledge, but is facilitating a relationship with Christ.”

Gado was raised in Nigeria before coming to the U.S. with his family in 1991 where he quickly discovered a passion for football and the study of biology. He was offered many scholarships before accepting a full athletic scholarship from Liberty, where he went on to graduate with a degree in Health Promotion in 2005.

He delayed his dream to go on to medical school and played as a running back in the NFL for five seasons, with the Green Bay Packers, the Houston Texans, the Miami Dolphins, the Saint Louis Rams, and the Tennessee Titans.

Samkon Gado
Liberty University alumnus Samkon Gado ('05), an NFL veteran and current student doctor, spoke to the graduating class during the annual Senior Convocation, hosted by the Alumni Relations Office.

In 2010, he ended his professional football career and relocated to South Carolina with his wife, Rachel, and his son, to study at the Medical University of South Carolina. He now plans to complete his residency in ear, nose, and throat surgery at St. Louis University.

“In both arenas I’ve found that success has been wrongly defined which leads to twisted ambitions and broken lives,” Gado told the students. “I’m certain that this falls short of what God intends for human flourishing.”

He warned the students that pursuing success in any area outside of a dependence on Christ will lead to an empty life, void of meaning.

 “It is God who determines what happens with your work,” Gado said. “He may choose to give you success the world will recognize, or He may not. You may find yourself at the top of the corporate ladder or on a path that looks like failure to this world, but know that to the Lord success is obedience to Him. If you are obedient to Him, He offers a richness the world can never give, namely, Himself.”

Gado closed by challenging students to follow the narrow path that leads to godly success.

“I wish you well, and I want you to succeed, and I think as you guys go forward it is very important that you learn and be able to discern what success looks like because it’s going to be defined differently wherever you go,” Gado said.

The Class of 2015 will be awarded their degrees during Liberty’s 42nd annual Commencement Exercises on May 9. Former Fla. Gov. Jeb Bush will be the keynote speaker.